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GRANDPARENT VISITATION RIGHTS
Grandparents have certain rights to visitation with grandchildren under Illinois law. Bruning & Associates has successfully established the right to grandparent visitation between grandparents and their grandson in a particularly heart-wrenching case. The parents of the grandchild divorced when the child was very young. The child’s mother and daughter of the grandparents died after a long battle with a severe illness. During the mother’s illness, the grandparents assumed many of the parental duties and obligations to the child. The child’s father was involved with the child infrequently for most of the child’s early years. After the mother’s death, the father, who had assumed custody of the child, denied visitation with the maternal grandparents for a period of almost one year. The grandparents filed a suit to establish grandparent visitation. Experts in the field of psychology testified at trial that the denial of visitation with the grandparents substantially harmed the physical, emotional and mental well being of the child. The court granted the grandparents visitation, and the subsequent visitation has had profound and positive effects upon the child’s well being.
Grandparent visitation is permitted under Illinois law in certain limited situations if there is an unreasonable denial of visitation by a parent. These situations include the following:
- The child's other parent is deceased;
- The child’s other parent has been missing for at least 3 months;
- A parent of the child is incompetent as a matter of law;
- A parent has been incarcerated in jail or prison during the 3 month period preceding the filing of the petition; and
- The child's mother and father are divorced or have been legally separated from each other or there is pending a dissolution proceeding involving a parent of the child or another court proceeding involving custody or visitation of the child (other than any adoption proceeding of an unrelated child) and at least one parent does not object to the grandparent having visitation with the child;
- The child is born out of wedlock, the parents are not living together, and the petitioner is a maternal grandparent of the child born out of wedlock; or
- The child is born out of wedlock, the parents are not living together, the petitioner is a paternal grandparent and the paternity has been established by a court of competent jurisdiction.
- Please contact the attorneys and professional staff at Bruning & Associates P.C. if you have questions related to grandparent visitation rights.
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